This condition is also known as chronic or autoimmune lymphocytic thyroiditis and is the most common of the three types. It causes enlargement of the thyroid but you may only feel it on one side. When this condition develops, it is because the thyroid cannot convert iodine into thyroid hormone. The body attempts to compensate for this by getting bigger. Hashimoto’s thyroiditis is the leading cause of hypothyroidism. The thyroid may still take in a lot of iodine but cannot use it to synthesize thyroid hormone. TSH levels increase and T4 decreases with this condition, and thyroid antibodies are present in the majority of cases. The presence of antibodies is often used as a diagnostic tool before more invasive methods like biopsies and surgery. Thyroid replacement hormone can correct or prevent hypothyroidism and will stop the thyroid from enlarging.
De Quervain’s Thyroiditis
This condition is also known as subacute or granulomatous thyroiditis and is rarer than Hashimoto’s. The thyroid enlarges quickly and becomes tender and painful. Thyroid hormone is released into the blood, causing hyperthyroidism. If you develop this condition, you are likely to feel ill and will need best rest. There are usually no antibodies present, but high levels of inflammation are common. This condition usually self-resolves with rest within a few weeks. Some people may even develop hypothyroid afterwards.
This is the least common type of thyroiditis and resembles both of the other conditions to a degree. It is most common in women who have just given birth, and usually no treatment is required. It usually self-resolves within three months and the gland only enlarges slightly. Bed rest and medication to reduce heart palpitations is the common form of treatment. A small number of people who develop silent thyroiditis may go on to develop hypothyroidism and may require thyroid replacement hormone. Low cost clinics in Las Vegas will be able to perform the diagnostic tests you need and make recommendations on the best course of treatment.